Saturday, April 12, 2008

I Cannot Believe This

Now, when I was complaining last night about my computer, I had no idea that it would take revenge on me.

I had left my computer on overnight which I sometimes do. When I sat down at my desk this morning, I noticed that it had a black screen instead of the usual screen saver.

Oh no.

I tried to get it out of sleep mode with no luck, so I manually shut it down. Then it wouldn't restart. After many attempts, I finally got it started in safe mode, but once I was in safe mode, I couldn't do anything. No system restore. Nothing. So, I shut it down. It shut down cleanly, but now, nothing. It won't restart. It will power on, but all I get is a black screen.

That damn computer died! This is the second HP laptop that I have owned that has just died. At least this one waited a couple weeks later than the first one and died after I finished tax work for my clients.

My six-month warranty on that PIECE OF SHIT just ended LAST WEEK.

So, I have to buy a new computer. Bye-bye summer vacation.

Friday, April 11, 2008

Radio Show Friday, April 11 8-10am

Ella Fitzgerald - A Tisket A Tasket
Tex Williams - Suspicion
Basia Bulat - In the Night
David Bowie - Queen Bitch
Screamin' Jay Hawkins - Constipation Blues
Billy Bragg - The Beach Is Free
The Spinners - It's A Shame
Ruth Brown - Teardrops From My Eyes
A Girl Called Eddy - The Soundtrack of Your Life
Clarence "Frogman" Henry - Ain't Got No Home
Golden Palominos - I'm Not Sorry
Acid House Kings - This and That

I had a mostly uneventful radio show today. But I was excited about playing that David Bowie song. I don't know anything about David Bowie. I mostly learn about his music through other artists who cover his song. But I do love "Queen Bitch." But like with Bob Dylan, I don't even know where Bowie era to begin with. It seems like his music has changed so much that it's all too overwhelming.

Last night, I went to see Shelby Lynn. I just don't get her. She has some CRAZY obsessed fans who were much more entertaining to watch than Lynn. But I just don't get what the fuss is all about. Her voice was nice and all, but she never belted it out Neko-Case-style which is what I wanted her to do. And she wore a freakin' business suit. Who the heck performs at the Artscenter in a freakin' business suit? But on the way home, I listened to Clarence "Frogman" Henry. His song, "Ain't Got No Home" makes me very happy and makes me dance with my shoulders.

I am still in a bad mood over this computer, so it's hard for me to express any joy over my radio show.

Here's the link to the entire playlist.


Seriously. I really really really really hate this machine. And I really really really really hate Vista. Alot. A whole lot. I have never in my life felt hatred like this.

Here's a picture. This is the laptop you should avoid like the plague. I about typed "avoid like the plaque." We should all avoid the plague, the plaque and this laptop.
I'm ready for my tax refund so I can buy a new computer.

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

The Life Of A Mix Tape

As I have mentioned before, I am a musical whore.... I'll exchange mix tapes and cds with any willing participant. Over the years, my mix tapes have multiplied. The mix cd collection has grown so huge that it filled up an entire shelf in my record cabinet to the point that I had to move a few feet of records out to a closet.

So, a month ago, I decided to clean them out. I filled an entire garbage bag full of old mixes. Yes, an entire garbage bag. Things that hit the can included old cd club mixes, mixes from long lost friends, and hey-I-can-out-obscure-you mixes. I told some folks about this big purge. They looked at me in shock as if I had thrown away the family heirloom silver collection.

But really... how long is one supposed to hang onto these things? Mix tapes and CDs are like greeting cards or postcards: you keep the interesting or meaningful ones and toss the rest. Really. What am I supposed to do with a collection of unlistenable covers of Tori Amos songs? (Thank god I never got one like that.)

Recently, I got a mix in the mail from my cd club. There was no return address. I opened the package and removed the cd. Then, when I opened the cd case, a little slip of paper fell out.

This is what it said:
To improve playback in Itunes:
  • Insert CD
  • Right click first song and select "Get Info"
  • Click on the "Options" tab
  • Then make the following adjustments, hitting "Next" to move from one track to the next:
    • Track 1: Change "Stop Time" to 3:25
    • Track 2: Move "Volume Adjustment" to 100% and make "Stop Time" 6:02
    • Track 3: Change "Stop Time" to 5:00
    • Track 4: Change "Stop Time" to 3:35
    • and on and on and on for each track.

HOPE! I! DO! I have never in my life received a mix cd that came with instructions! And what tedious instructions. BLEAH!!! This mix not only didn't make it to the CD player, but it went straight into the trash. I didn't even read the track listing. Maybe I'm old-fashioned, but I believe that one should be able to just put a CD into a CD player and have music come out.... without having to send it out to be mastered and tracked. It's that simple.

What is your mix tape/mix cd shelf life? Do you hang onto them forever?

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Radio Show Friday, March 7 8-10AM

Radar Brothers - Happy Spirits
Shout Out Louds - Impossible
Sarah Vaughan - East of the Sun (West of the Moon)
Hope Sandoval & the Warm Inventions - Suzanne
Dolly Parton - Here You Come Again
Ronnie Lane - Kuschty Rye
Super Furry Animals - Carbon Dating
Steve Miller Band - True Fine Love
Butterglory - Waiting on the Guns
Sandro Perri - Everybody's Talkin'
Golden Smog and Roseanne Cash - Seven Year Ache
Speedy West and Jimmy Bryant - Stratosphere Boogie

Do you love Dolly Parton like I love her? I recently watched 9 to 5 which ignited my desire to hear late 70s - early 80s era Dolly. I love her yodel "Muleskinner Blues." But even more than her yodel, I love "Here You Come Again." I have probably played that song 50 times in the car over the past couple weeks. And I cannot wait to get back to the station to play some off the 9 to 5 soundtrack which WXYC just acquired.

2008 has not been kind to me so far. One of the saddest things to happen is that the High Dollar Hot Dogs broke up. Well, I guess we have broken up. I never got officially dumped. But they've stopped returning my calls and emails. I was told that breaking up is what bands do. It hurts a little, but I knew that it wasn't going to work out. In memory of our little band, I played my favorite song that we covered, "Seven Year Ache."

But there is still hope for me and the uke. I told a few folks about my dream to start up the Steve Miller Band Ukulele Cover Band. Several people are interested! But I need to find a good lead uke player, because that surely isn't me. Last weekend I stayed up until 4am playing uke with Mark. We learned the Everly Brothers' "When Will I Be Loved." I also want to play Steve Miller's "True Fine Love" with the new band. Do you? Come join! Bring songs! Unfortunately, this band is still very much a dream, but maybe once things slow down a bit, I can bring this band to life.

Last week, I played Sandro Perri's cover of Fred Neil's "Everybody's Talkin.'" Because of this song, I rented the film Midnight Cowboy. I knew nothing about the film when I put it at the top of my Netflix list. I didn't know that John Voight (who is hot) and Dustin Hoffman were in it. I didn't know that it was the only movie rated X that ever won an Academy Award. I didn't know that it was about a hustler in NYC. I finally got around to watching it last night and it blew me away. I loved it! The little experimental film bits were incredible. I also have a new appreciation for Dustin Hoffman. I highly recommend it.

I am still very much obsessed with Ronnie Lane. Last week it was "Kuschty Rye." This week, it's "The Poacher." I would be playing "The Poacher" tomorrow on the radio, but since it's spring break, I am taking a week off. But tune in from 9am to noon to hear Tim's show which is really wonderful.

The rest of my playlist from last week's show can be found here.

Sunday, March 9, 2008

Barbecue and Basketball Makes For A Perfect Day

Yesterday, Mark, Lance, Sara, Nora, Kevin and I piled into a car and headed down 64 to Lexington to have some barbecue. Holy moly. The barbecue at Lexington #1 was phenomenal. As soon as we pulled in the parking lot, you could smell the smokehouse.

I got a hotdog and a plate of barbecue and slaw:

The barbecue was smoky and flavorful all on its own. The slaw was very vinegary and seemd to compliment the barbecue perfectly. The hushpuppies did nothing for me. I thought they were bland and dry, but I was the only person in the group that felt this way. What do I know.

After we ate, Lance, Kevin and I wandered around to the back of the restaurant and were invited inside to view THE MEAT IN THE PIT!!!!

It was fun to be in the car with a bunch of music geeks. I was teased for liking Bill Withers and John Schneider. But it's cool because I introduced them to this unique version of Van Halen's "Running with the Devil" which thrilled Nora to no end.

After we got back, I came home and practiced ukulele for a little while before walking over to Kevin's to watch the biggest basketball game of the season. After loading up on tacos and tamales from Azteca Grill and plenty of beers, we watched the game on the BIG HD TV. During the second half, Lance asks us if we would prefer seeing Paulus' jaw broken or to have UNC win the game. But even better than having his jaw broken, Paulus was offered some tea:

And then we won the game. I celebrated by coming home and drinking *more* bourbon and dancing to Richard Hawley in the kitchen.

North Carolina in March doesn't get any better than that.

Sunday, March 2, 2008

New Blog Tag: Ronnie Lane

This weekend has been a Ronnie Lane weekend. I got a little drunk last night and ended up buying a very expensive out-of-print Ronnie Lane LP online. Amazon One-Click is dangerous.

I also bought two Faces CDs at CD Alley today.

I love Ronnie Lane.

Why is his music so hard to find? Where is my Ronnie Lane box set? Why can't I find some good ukulele chords for "Ooh La La" online?